I thought it might be fun to do one of my own memes that folks put on Facebook. So here’s my take on “What People Think I Do.”
Truth is…it’s all true!!
Photos by Nancy Birnbaum © 2012
Posted in boating, Boating Gear, Conservation, Cruising Resources, Environment, Fishing, Green Gear, Oceans, offshore sailing, plastic, Sailboats, sailing, Technology, world cruising, Yachting, tagged adventure sailing, Alternative Cleansers, Alternative Energy, blue water saling, boat gear, boating, conservation, EarthDay 2011, environmental catastrophe, fishing, Fuel, Green boating, Green Products, Green Sailing, Non-Toxic Boat Cleaning, offshore sailing, Protecting Waterways, Recycle, Sailboats, sailing, Sailors Without Borders, Solar, Technology, Wind Power, world cruising, Yacht to be Green, Yachting on April 22, 2011| 1 Comment »
1. Choose Green Products: Look for the EPA-certified “Design for the Environment” (DfE) label, which assures you that the product has minimal environmental impact and is safer for the person using it. Benefit: Safer products. Reduce water pollution.
2. Use The Right Prop: Use a prop with the right pitch so your engine reaches its designed wide-open-throttle RPM. An adjustable-pitch propeller allows you to dial in the optimum pitch angle in single degrees. Modular props, let you swap props while keeping the same hub. Benefit: Reduce fuel consumption, improve performance. [ flexofold.com ].
3. Add Alternative Energy: Solar panels and wind generators are getting more affordable and smarter. Most systems can be self-installed and will reduce your fuel costs significantly. Benefit: Reduce Carbon footprint & Reduce fuel consumption. Go to www.emarineinc.com for good comparison of the two options.
4. Keep The Bilge Clean: Avoid the accidental discharge of oily water by using a sorbent in each bilge area. Consider a bioremediation product designed to convert hydrocarbons into safe compounds. Benefit: Safer products. Reduce water pollution
5. Retire That 2-Stroke Outboard: Although it may be possible to get a few more years out of your old-technology outboard, you’ll be much happier with the reduced noise, fumes, fuel consumption, and pollution of a modern injected four-stroke outboard. For an even quieter ride, try an electric outboard. Benefit: Save gas and reduce water pollution.
6. Recycle your Lead-Acid Batteries: 12V batteries are among the most recycled products in the world. Benefit: Save money and conserve resources. [ earth911.com ].
7. Prevent Fuel Spills: Use or install a device to prevent overboard discharges from your tank vent. Benefit: Save gas and reduce water pollution
8. Use an autopilot: Modern autopilots can steer better than most helmspersons—and they don’t have a limited attention span. Benefit: Reduce fuel consumption
9. Recycle Your Monofilament Fishing Line. If your harbor doesn’t have a recycling location, see the website [ fishinglinerecycling.org ].
10. Eat Responsibly Harvested Seafood: Choose sustainable seafood at a restaurants or grocery stores to ensure that the fish stocks are plentiful for your children and for generations to come. Go to eartheasy.com/eat_sustainable_seafoods.htm for informational guide.
Alternatives to Toxic Products
Product ➛ Alternative
Bleach ➛ Borax
Detergent & Soap ➛ Elbow grease
Scouring Powders ➛ Baking soda, or rub area with one-half lemon dipped in borax, then rinse
General Cleaner ➛ Baking soda and vinegar, or lemon juice combined with borax paste
Floor Cleaner ➛ One cup vinegar in 2 gallons of water
Window Cleaner ➛ One cup vinegar + 1 qt. warm water. Rinse and squeegee
Aluminum Cleaner ➛ 2 Tbsp. cream of tartar + 1 qt. of hot water
Brass Cleaner ➛ Worcestershire sauce, or paste made of equal amounts of salt, vinegar and water
Copper Cleaner ➛ Lemon juice and water, or paste of lemon juice, salt, and flour
Chrome Cleaner/Polish ➛ Apple cider vinegar to clean; baby oil to polish
Stainless Steel Cleaner ➛ Baking soda or mineral oil for polishing, vinegar to remove spots
Fiberglass Stain Remover ➛ Baking soda paste
Mildew Remover ➛ Paste with equal amounts of lemon juice and salt, or white vinegar and salt
Drain Opener ➛ Dissemble or use plumber’s snake, or flush with boiling water + one-quarter cup baking soda + one-quarter cup vinegar
Wood Polish ➛ Olive or almond oil (interior walls only)
Hand Cleaner ➛ Baby oil or margarine
Head & Shower ➛ Baking soda; brush thoroughly
Rug/Upholstery Cleaner ➛ Dry corn starch sprinkled on; vacuum
According to the Ocean Conservancy, there are five general ways boaters can protect our oceans and waterways, and conveniently enough, each of the five tips starts with a letter that ends up spelling the word “BOATS”.
Be a leader in your community. Talk about marine litter prevention with members of your boating community, from your neighbor in the next slip to boating clubs and marina managers.
Offer your time. Volunteer in boat and marina cleanup programs, especially at sites only accessible by boat. And participate in Ocean Conservancy’s annual International Coastal Cleanup, the largest volunteer effort of its kind for the ocean.
Accidents happen. Be prepared with absorbent pads to clean oil or fuel spills. Dish soap doesn’t work. It just causes those liquids to sink and contaminate the bottom.
Take it all back to shore. Don’t allow cigarette butts to go overboard; small but significant, they are the most prevalent marine litter item found during the International Coastal Cleanup. Dispose of them properly onshore.
Set the pace. Recycle everything you can, from beverage containers to propeller-snarling fishing line or plastic bags.
Read more at the Daily Boater
Of course the greenest thing sailors can do is to just…………Sail!
Posted in boating, Crew, Education, Racing, Sailboats, sailing, yacht racing, Yachting, tagged all-female-crew, Nothern Child, Rolex Regatta, Safe Passage Sailing, sailing, sailing education, St.Thomas, Yachting on April 5, 2011| 1 Comment »
Day three of the Rolex Regatta found me out on the water again, except I was not on a comfortable cat or a bouncy press boat. On Sunday I got to race! I accepted an invitation to sail on board Northern Child , the 51 Swan belonging to Brit Christian Reynolds and being chartered by Safe Passage Sailing. Though I came to shoot photos, it wasn’t long before I had to trade the camera for a winch handle! Scampering up to the high side as we tacked our way into position for the start of the first race around Pillsbury Sound, completing distance courses that explored the cays and islands off St. Thomas, I recalled my early racing “career” as a pre-teen in the Chesapeake. My Uncle George taught me the fine art of being rail meat, an experience I will never forget! Back then, we new our jobs and tried like hell not to get in the way or worse, yelled at. And that, my friends, is why I only sail with non-yellers!
The crew of Northern Child (in the CSA Spinnaker 2 class) – seven very tough gals, were up against some pretty stiff competition. “Sailors came from around the globe, and each class had a good number of boats with impressive depth of competition,” said Regatta Director Bill Canfield. One of only two all female crews in this Regatta, Northern Child had a secret weapon in coach Suzette Smith.
“We’re going to sail a broad reach, so I want you all to think about what has to happen next. How will the sails be trimmed? Where do you need to be?” Suzette called out to us. Her calm tones gave instant clarity and assured us that we did know how to do it. I have to give Suzette tons of credit. It’s not easy to take a group of strangers with varying degrees of experience and turn them into a well-oiled racing team after just two days of practice. Two days! “By Sunday, something clicks in your head and you’re starting to anticipate the next move rather than wait to be instructed,” one participant told me. “It’s too bad we’re not racing next week as well, now that we’ve got it!”
Safe Passage Sailing lived up to it’s mission: To provide opportunities for the intermediate to advanced sailor to participate in celebrated sailing events, around the U.S. and in international waters and to provide an exciting and fulfilling experience for those in pursuit of adventure, knowledge and growth.” After sailing just two races with this crew,it was clear to me that every single one of them had learned something, either about racing or about themselves. Most likely, both!
And the Winners Are…
With today’s two victories to add to an already perfect score line, Willem Wester’s (SUI) Grand Soleil 43 Antilope made an impressive showing in the nine-boat IRC 2 class, earning Wester a Rolex Explorer timepiece as prize. (Timepieces were also awarded to IRC 1 class, the top performer among CSA Spinnaker classes and IC 24 one-design class.)
“This was our first time to this part of the world,” said Wester, who has won Cowes Week the last two years aboard Antilope and sailed with a crew from Belgium and Holland that included veteran Volvo Ocean Race skipper Bouwe Bekking, who called tactics, and Olympian Philippe Bergmans, who steered.
For Ed Baird (St. Petersburg, Fla.), being a seasoned professional didn’t take anything away from his experience here. The winning skipper from the 2007 America’s Cup (Alinghi) crewed aboard Richard Oland’s (New Brunswick, CAN) Southern Cross Vela Veloce while Canadian Olympian Richard Clarke steered. The team finished second in IRC 1 class, conceding to Jim Swartz’s (Park City, Utah) TP52 Vesper/Team Moneypenny, which won all but one of six races.
In the CSA Spinnaker 2 class, Calvin Reed’s (Tampa, Fla.) Beneteau First 40.7 Elandra of Hamble won top honors as they fended off who they considered their #1 competition, Richard Wesslund’s (Miami, Fla.) J/120 El Ocaso, which slipped to third place overall after posting a 5-4 today.
Of course, it’s not just about the winners. Northern Child, with their neophyte racers working their magic managed to finish in the middle of the pack. Not bad! Congrats to all of you! I hope I helped a little bit!
International Rolex Regatta 2011
IC 24 (One Design – 16 Boats)
1. Team INTAC JV, IC 24, William Bailey , St. Thomas, VI, USA – 6, 3, 3, 1, 1, 3, 2, 1, 6, 2, 4, 1, 3, 3, 4, 4, 4, ; 51
2. Orion, IC 24, Fraito Lugo , Ponce, PR, USA – 5, 2, 7, 2, 11, 8, 1, 2, 5, 3, 7, 3, 9, 4, 2, 3, 1, ; 75
3. Soggy Dollar BVI, IC 24, Chris Cuerreri , St. Thomas , USVI – 2, 8, 2, 12, 3, 4, 4, 7, 1, 12, 9, 4, 2, 1, 3, 2, 6, ; 82
CSA Spinnaker 1 (CSA – 6 Boats)
1. Team INTAC/CROWLEY, Melges 32, Mark Plaxton , Sea Cows Bay, Tortola, BVI – 1, 2, 2, 2, 1, 1, ; 9
2. Budget Marine/GILL , Melges 24, Andrea Scarabelli , Cole Bay, St. Maarten, AHO – 3, 1, 4, 1, 2, 4, ; 15
3. Jurakan, Melges 32, David West , Road Town, Tortola, BVI – 2, 3, 1, 4, 4, 3, ; 17
CSA Spinnaker 2 (CSA – 11 Boats)
1. Elandra of Hamble, Beneteau First 40.7, Calvin Reed , Tampa, FL, USA – 3, 2, 2, 1, 2, 2, ; 12
2. Smile and Wave, Beneteau First 40, Jaime Torres , San Juan, PR, USA – 6, 3, 1, 3, 1, 3, ; 17
3. El Ocaso, J 120, Richard Wesslund , Miami, FL, USA – 4, 1, 3, 2, 5, 4, ; 19
CSA Spinnaker 3 (CSA – 6 Boats)
1. Wild At Heart, JOD 35, Timothy Molony , New Orleans, LA, USA – 2, 1, 1, 1, 1, 1, ; 7
2. Otrakosa, J 80, Kike Gonzalez , San Juan, PR, USA – 1, 2, 2, 2, 2, 2, ; 11
3. Mag 7, J 27, Paul Davis , Charlotte amalie, VI, USA – 3, 3, 3, 4, 4, 4, ; 21
CSA Non-Spinnaker (CSA – 10 Boats)
1. Lost Horizon, J 122, James Dobbs , Falmouth, ANT – 5, 1, 1, 1, 2, ; 10
2. Cayennita Grande, J 36, Antonio Sanpere , Christiansted, VI, USA – 2, 2, 2, 3, 1, ; 10
3. Bonne Chance, Beneteau First 35s5, Bernardo Gonzalez , Dorado, PR, USA – 1, 3, 3, 2, 3, ; 12
IRC 1 (IRC – 6 Boats)
1. Vesper, TP 52, James Swartz , Park City, Utah, USA – 2, 1, 1, 1, 1, 1, ; 7
2. Vela Veloce, Southern Cross 52, Richard Oland , Saint John, NB, CAN – 3, 2, 2, 2, 2, 3, ; 14
3. Interlodge, JV 52, Austin and Gwen Fragomen , Newport, RI, USA – 1, 4, 4, 3, 3, 2, ; 17
IRC 2 (IRC – 9 Boats)
1. Antilope, Grand Soleil 43, Willem Wester , Breskens, Zeeland, NED – 1, 1, 1, 1, 1, 1, ; 6
2. Three Harkoms, Oceanis 44, James Hudleston , St. petersburg, FL, USA – 2, 4, 2, 4, 3, 2, ; 17
3. Arethusa, Club Swan 42, Phil Lotz , Newport, RI, USA – 3, 2, 3, 2, 4, 4, ; 18
Beach Cats (Portsmouth – 9 Boats)
1. Universal, Hobie 16, Jorge L Ramos , San Juan, PR, USA – 2, 1, 1, 1, 1, ; 6
2. Time Out, Hobie 16, John Holmberg , St. Thomas, VI, USA – 3, 2, 3, 2, 2, ; 12
3. Island Girl, Hobie 16, Teri McKenna , St. Thomas, VI, USA – 5, 3, 5, 3, 3, ; 19
Posted in boating, Racing, Sailboats, sailing, yacht racing, Yachting, tagged boating, caribbean, Rolex Regatta, Sailboats, sailing, St.Thomas, USVI's, World Class Racing, Yachting on March 30, 2011| 1 Comment »
Thirty eight years ago the first International Rolex Regatta took place in St. Thomas and so began a long tradition that endures to this day. With 71 boats signed up, the 2011 International Rolex Regatta began on Friday, March 25, and ran through Sunday, March 27. Attracting some “Big Guns,” such as Boewe Bekking, Gavin Brady, Ed Baird, Steve Benjamin, Richard Clarke and Chris Larson aboard the keelboats, but those veteran professionals were by no means guaranteed victory-or a good time-in the eight classes, which included two for IRC, four for CSA, and one each for IC 24s and Beach Cats. They were up against some first timers who would give them a run for their money!
First up on the three-day race schedule – some colorful “town races” that started at St. Thomas Yacht Club and finished in Charlotte Amalie Harbour at lunchtime before starting up again for a return to the Yacht Club.
Getting out in the midst of the action, I hopped on a 26 footer, “press boat” with Capt John and some fellow photographers. With bumpy conditions and a lovely tradewinds breeze, we found a good spot to view the start of the first race, on the east end of St Thomas and just off St James Island. I was attempting to pick out two particular yachts, each racing in different classes and with various start times. It was good to have a seasoned Rolex Regatta photographer onboard with us to help direct, as this was my first time.
The International Rolex Regatta is one of the top sailing events on the island circuit with competitors coming from as far away as the UK and The Netherlands, and sailors lucky enough to win the top classes can also take home a Rolex Explorer watch. Parties are legendary, including a Saturday evening reggae music and food fete at Yacht Haven Grande, adding the requisite luxury backdrop and an unforgettable prize giving event on Sunday hosted by Rolex. Racing includes a mix of short courses and long distance races that take place off St. Thomas Yacht Club and along the waterfronts of St. Thomas and St. John.
“With dependable trade winds, great racing is assured, and we work hard to make it easy for sailors and their families to participate,” said Regatta Co-Director Bill Canfield, explaining that the St. Thomas Yacht Club is the central meeting place for breakfast each morning and socializing after racing.
“One of our traditions is the ‘town race’ on Friday, where the entire fleet races from the east end of St. Thomas right to the heart of the bustling commercial harbor of Charlotte Amalie,” added Canfield. “Once the fleet has finished, we start them again for the race back home. The spectacle of a mass of colorful spinnakers against the backdrop of the surrounding hills of St. Thomas makes for postcard perfect photos and give the locals, as well as others who are visiting, an opportunity to see St. Thomas’ beautiful and historic capital in it’s historic racing glory.
Racing is rounded out on the weekend by a mix of island races and windward/leewards designed to test skills and showcase the stunning shoreline. Classes include IRC, CSA (Spinnaker Racing, Spinnaker Racing/Cruising and Non-Spinnaker Racing), One-Design IC 24s (Melges) and Beach Cats. It has been hosted by St. Thomas Yacht Club since 1974, making it the oldest regatta in Rolex’s portfolio of international sailing events. The Rolex portfolio includes famous offshore and grand-prix events such as the Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race, Rolex Fastnet Race, Giraglia Rolex Cup, Rolex Middle Sea Race, Maxi Yacht Rolex Cup and the Rolex Farr 40 World Championship.
From (in part) Media Pro International and RegattaNews.com.
Photos by Nancy Birnbaum, 2011
Posted in apps, boating, Fishing, Innovations, iPad, iPhone App, sailing, small boats, Technology, tagged android apps, awards, boat gear, boat show, Boat Shows, boating, fishing, iphone, marine industry, miami boat show, MIBS, NMMA, sailing, small boats, Technology on February 21, 2011| 1 Comment »
The Recreational Boating & Fishing Foundation (RBFF) was honored today for innovative achievement by the National Marine Manufacturers Association (NMMA) and Boating Writers International (BWI) at the 70th annual Miami International Boat Show & Strictly Sail Miami. RBFF received an Honorable Mention in the 2011 Innovation Awards for its Take Me Fishing Boat Ramp App.
The National Marine Manufacturers Association (NMMA) and Boating Writers International (BWI) honored eleven marine products with 2011 Innovation Awards on Thursday and one as an Honorable Mention. The recognition took place during a State of the Industry Breakfast at the Miami International Boat Show & Strictly Sail Miami.
The Innovation Awards, organized by NMMA and judged by BWI, recognize products that best meet the following criteria: innovative distinction from other products currently being manufactured; benefit to the marine industry and/or consumer; practicality; cost-effectiveness; and availability to the consumer within 60 days of award receipt.
Among the winners for the Consumer Electronics and Software category, NMMA bestowed Honorable Mention to the Take Me Fishing Boat Ramp Mobile App. Available on iTunes and in the Droid Market, the FREE app allows users to search an impressive database of more than 35,000 launch points by city or zip code and even offers turn-by-turn directions. It’s already been downloaded by more than 27,000 mobile users.
The app was developed by Derek Trauger & Associates who have a number of useful apps available for boating enthusiasts on both iPhone and Android phones. Traugers’ most recent: The BoatUS app that helps members call for a tow and includes helpful location and tracking features just for boaters, sailors and anglers. The moment you hit the App’s ‘Call Now for a Tow’ button, it automatically provides TowBoatU.S. with critical information before their crew even answers the phone.
Traugers’ other apps include Padi, Dive Spots, Bait Shops and iBoatShows. With over 60,000 downloads to date, Derek is on his way to becoming the top App Developer to the Marine Industry.
Posted in boating blogs, cruising, disappearance, Hijacked, offshore sailing, Safety & Security, sailing, world cruising, yacht, Yachting, tagged cruising, disappearance, Hijacked, hijacked boat, missing cruisers, missing sailor, S/V Quest, Safety & Security, sailing, Somali pirates, Southern California, world cruising, yacht, yacht | Tagged american yacht on February 20, 2011| Leave a Comment »
After hearing of the taking of The Quest with Jean & Scott Adam and two crew, fellow cruisers and SSCA Commodores Nancy & Burger Zapf (Halekai, currently in Phuket) wrote to say:
“We first met Jean and Scott in Suwarrow (Cook Islands) in 2005 and met up with them again in Fiji and Vanuatu 2 years ago. Thought you’d be interested to read the attached…They had been sailing with the Blue Water Rally.
Scott and Jean Adam joined the Oz-Med section of the Blue Water Rally just before Christmas and had been sailing with the Rally from Phuket as far as Mumbai. Quest had taken on two well-known rally participants: Phyllis Mackay and Bob Riggle. However, she chose to take an independent route from Mumbai to Salalah, leaving the Rally on 15 February. All information is now being handled by the US Central Command and their spokesman in Dubai.”
So now we have the identity of the two other crew members onboard The Quest.
According to an article in today’s LA Times, “U.S. Military officials said they are considering a response after reports that pirates off the coast of Somalia hijacked a yacht belonging to an Orange County, Calif., couple on a worldwide voyage distributing Bibles.
Rear Adm. Charles Gaouette, deputy commander of the U.S. Navy’s 5th Fleet, told CNN on Saturday that the U.S. is prepared to intervene to rescue the couple if they are indeed aboard the boat.”
French Commandos have previously rescued the crews of two French vessels that were hijacked, by military intervention. In the second of these, the rescue of the yacht Tanit in April 2009, the skipper Florent Lemacon was killed by friendly fire, while his widow Chloe and small son Colin were rescued.
No military attempts to rescue yacht crews by this method have been made since. Later in 2009 British cruising sailors Rachel and Paul Chandler were captured and held in captivity for over a year before a ransom was paid and they were released. The British Navy watched the hijacking at sea, but held fire for fear of hitting the Chandlers.
Piracy has flourished off Somalia’s coast for two decades. Cruisers are having to make serious decisions about whether or not to voyage into pirate-infested waters.